Tyra Banks may be trying to groom the next supermodel on “America’s Next Top Model,” but over in Tokyo, they’re building their catwalkers from motors, batteries, and software. On March 23, the National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology will unveil HRP-4C, a sleek Cybernetic fashion model that is battery-powered and programmed to mimic the facial expressions, gait, and poses of real supermodels. This robot is 5 feet 2 inches tall — quite a bit shorter than the average runway model, but her 95-pound weight will have every starving supermodel jealous. Although her shape represents the average Japanese woman, her eyes, face, and hair are based on anime comics. Like most runway walkers, this robot is programmed only for entertainment, not housework. At a cost of $2 million, this model might never come to market, but experts expect a multi-billion dollar robot industry in the future. [Reuters] Keep reading »
Michelle Obama hasn’t even been First Lady for a full two months, and she’s already getting recognized for making an impact on American fashion. The Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA) announced that Obama will be presented with the Board of Directors’ Special Tribute when the year’s fashion awards are given in June. Along with this acknowledgement, the nominees for the Swarovski Award for Womenswear, given to an emerging American designer two Obama favorites: Thakoon Panichgul and Jason Wu. So, if a young designer wants commendation (and a sweet cash prize to help their business), clearly they should keep the First Lady in mind. And if Obama attends the CFDA gala, what will she wear — maybe a Thakoon-Wu mashup? Keep reading »
Hey. You. Yeah, you. The guy at the other end of the bar. The tall, dark, handsome fellow. Holding your sunglasses. Sporting that black jacket. The white shirt. The day-old stubble. AND THE LATEX STOCKINGS WITH MATCHING THONG AND GARTERS. I was trolling the internet when I encountered this fellow. He’s really … something, isn’t he? I don’t even know what to say about him. Or what I would say to him if I met him in a bar. “I like your … pumps?” As Tim Gunn would say: “That’s a lotta look.” And, indeed, it is. Between the meggings, the male polish, and the bros, I know I’m starting to feel a little confused about 21st century gender roles. Well, at least if my stilettos disappear, I’ll know who nicked them. [Simon O.] Keep reading »
March is National Women’s History Month, and we’re celebrating by sharing a lady we admire each weekday.
ELLEN OCHOA (1958- )
Born May 10, 1958, Ellen Ochoa is a student, researcher, inventor, electrical engineer and, of course, an astronaut. Her many talents and accomplishments make her an extraordinary woman and a positive role model to many. She’s best known for co-inventing an optical system for space exploration, as well as for her role as an astronaut. As an astronaut, Ochoa worked with computer hardware, robotics, flight software and more. She served many important roles at NASA, including being a member of the crew aboard the spacewalk mission that was the first to use the robotic arm, which she helped to control. Ochoa has received a great deal of awards and recognitions throughout her life, some of which include various NASA citations, the Harvard Foundation Science Award, the Hispanic Heritage Leadership Award and the Women in Aerospace Outstanding Achievement Award, among others.
The research conducted by Ellen Ochoa has contributed a great deal to aerospace science and technology. She is a role model not only to women young and old (like Punky Brewster!), but also to the Hispanic community. Two schools thought so highly of her that they have her been named in her honor: the Ellen Ochoa Learning Center (a pre-kindergarten school) and the Ellen Ochoa Middle School.
National Atomic Museum
Ellen Ochoa: The First Hispanic Woman Astronaut
Ellen Ochoa: Reach For The Stars!
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Jake Gyllenhaal and Heath Ledger in “Brokeback Mountain” (2005)
I didn’t spot much graffiti when I was in London last week — they sure do keep things clean — but on my last day I saw this little heart-shaped block plastered to a brick wall. Pretty fancy for vandalism, eh?
Have you seen graffiti that’s kind of sweet (even if it is against the law)? Send your pic to firstname.lastname@example.org. Keep reading »
Some folks have gotten their panties in a bunch over Beyonce’s cover for the “Shape Issue” of Vogue. Beyonce is one of only five black women to grace the cover of Vogue since it was founded in 1892, but blogs like Jezebel and Sociological Images think the magazine was being sexist and racist by putting her on the cover. I agree to some extent, but not for their reasons. Keep reading »
I have so many questions as I sit, rapt, through the intro to Monday’s night episode of “Gossip Girl”: Would Dan boink Ol’ Teachy McTeacherson again? Would Serena’s breasts push free of their restrictive corsetry and finally take over the entire screen with their golden magnificence? Would Chuck take his custom-made Saville Row pants off and dance for me and me alone? Keep reading »